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Lots Of Ways For Japan's Swimmers To Get In Hot Water

Illustration for article titled Lots Of Ways For Japans Swimmers To Get In Hot Water

If you're a competitive swimmer in Japan, you'd better not dye your hair, wear an earring or get your fingernails painted — unless you want to get banned. For a lifetime.

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The Japan Swimming Federation is cracking down on athletes who think they're rock stars. In addition, male and female swimmers are not supposed to sneak into each others' rooms.

It seems like whenever uniforms are involved, it's human to try and stand out — assert your own identity. Basketball players sometimes get heavily tattooed; Catholic schoolgirls often tweak their skirts.

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The question is: Is it more important to play by the rules? Or be yourself? In Japan, at least, it seems that representing the country respectfully is the ideal… But who doesn't want to root for the rebel?

Japan Pours Cold Water On Fashionista Swimmers [Reuters]

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DISCUSSION

When I was in high school a couple kids on our swim tea had tatoos (Our senior year, when they were 18), but it was against our district/state rules. They weren't allowed to compete with it showing, but no lifetime ban! They had to tape/bandaged over it for meets. (And one kid had this huge ass thing across half his back, he looked like he'd had a gunshot wound or something!) #swimming